Collaborations don’t always work out the way they’re supposed to, but when they do it’s a beautiful thing. Artists can either compliment each others’ strengths to produce something unique and memorable or accent each others’ weaknesses to create the easily forgettable. In the case of “Don’t Say No”, the recent collaborative effort from L.A. beatmaker Shlohmo and experimental R&B singer and producer Tom Krell, AKA How to Dress Well, the rolling, moody track feels as natural as any collaboration in recent memory.
The beat builds slowly, beginning with simple ?uestlove-esque thumps, before giving way to dark and distorted chords. “Real love,” Krell softly repeats before cowbell, stuttered hi-hats and deep synth-bass create a textured backdrop for Krell’s 90′s R&B inflected vocals. At the end of the track, Krell’s voice practically blends into Shlohmo’s ethereal sounds, a moaning falsetto sitting on top of filtered vocal runs while the beat continues it’s slow drive. Both artists have an uncanny ability to create reflective and emotive material, and together, they combine for a song full to the brim with feeling. “Don’t Say No” will be featured on Shlohmo’s Laid Out, which drops March 5th via Friends of Friends/WEDIDIT.